1966 Simon and Garfunkel – The Dangling Conversation
Ah, the sad sound of failure. Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel reached #49 on the Hot 100 in 1957, performing the single Hey Schoolgirl as Tom and Jerry.
The two stopped working together when they graduated from high school and each released some unnoticed solo singles. Paul also began writing for other artists and even worked in the Brill Building for a time.
They reunited In 1963 and began working as folksingers in clubs around New York. In 1964, Tom Wilson produced an album that included their acoustic version of a song Paul had written, Sounds Of Silence. The single failed to chart and the album that featured the song failed to sell well. The duo broke up, with Paul heading to London and Art remaining in the US.
A few radio stations began playing the failed single in early 1965, and Tom decided to remix Sounds Of Silence for a different audience: he added an electric guitar overdub to the recording. The new version turned out to be more acceptable to AM radio and the first week of 1966, the single hit #1 on the Hot 100.
The pair reunited and reentered the studio to record a new album. Two singles from the sessions, Homeward Bound and I Am A Rock, each reached the top five on the Hot 100.
Three more months of studio work created their third album, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme. While several of the songs had already been written, a few new songs appeared as well. Their fourth single in 1966 became The Dangling Conversation.
While Paul claimed that the song was his favorite from the new album, Art later insisted that he never liked the song because it was too pretentious. Art may have been correct: the single stalled at #25.
The duo recorded three more new singles in late 1966 and 1967, but none of them even reached the top ten. It would be their work with the film The Graduate and the song Mrs. Robinson that brought them back to the top of the charts in 1968.
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